PLACE TO BE

Lennox Herald - - THE BIG READ -

full-time and spoke to David about tak­ing that op­por­tu­nity. It works really well.” Tina came to the church in 2016 but was for­mally in­ducted as the full-time as­so­ciate min­is­ter in Au­gust, ce­ment­ing her place within the part­ner­ship with David.

They each take turns of preach­ing at He­lens­burgh and at Rhu and Shan­don each Sun­day and Tina also takes a mid­week ser­vice on a Wed­nes­day lunchtime which has proved pop­u­lar in re­cent months.

David added: “Ev­ery­one com­ments on how we com­ple­ment each other in terms of style. Min­istry can be a lonely pro­fes­sion but we de­lib­er­ately base our­selves here so peo­ple can pop in at any time.”

Now, hav­ing Tina for­mally on board, the duo have made it a pri­or­ity to cater for young peo­ple in the com­mu­nity.

David said: “One of the big things that we are both acutely aware of is the lack of pro­vi­sion within the town for young peo­ple. Var­i­ous churches, var­i­ous groups of­fer limited ser­vices in that di­rec­tion. There are fan­tas­tic fa­cil­i­ties and all this space up­stairs for young peo­ple and they can take own­er­ship of it.

“Cru­cially it can be some­where they can come and be, kick back, play the Playsta­tion, have a hot choco­late or what­ever else.

“We need some­one to staff that and build up a vol­un­teer base. Tina and I pro­duced a pa­per and pre­sented it to the Kirk ses­sion a few weeks ago which is a youth strat­egy.

“Part of that will see the em­ploy­ment of a di­rec­tor of youth min­istry and that will be a full-time sub­stan­tive post and the Kirk ses­sion voted com­pletely unan­i­mously in favour of that.

“Ev­ery­one bought into it. We are go­ing to set up a youth fo­rum which will in­volve bring­ing kids in var­i­ous groups round the ta­ble. We are very ex­cited about that.”

The church has al­ready made strides in pro­vid­ing for young peo­ple, run­ning a weekly drop-in when, be­tween 35 and 40 chil­dren from Her­mitage Academy, have been go­ing along to the church to so­cialise and en­joy a hot choco­late.

But as well as reach­ing out to young peo­ple, they are keen to ce­ment their place in the town as a com­mu­nity church, again com­ing back to their mantra of be­ing a “place to be”.

They en­joy 200 views a week on Face­book as they broad­cast their Sun­day ser­vices live and agree that it’s not just about “get­ting bums on seats” on a Sun­day, but pro­vid­ing an all-round ser­vice for peo­ple.

Tina said: “If we can reach peo­ple and they then de­cide to come to wor­ship that’s a bonus but it’s not the main thing for us.

“It’s about hav­ing the courage to in­vest the money and the skills and the time to be the church and hope­fully touch peo­ple in some way. If peo­ple can leave this place or we leave peo­ple in the com­mu­nity with a sense that the church has done some­thing then we will feel we’ve done our job.”

Min­istry team Rev David Young and Tina Kemp

Wor­ship He­lens­burgh Par­ish Church

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